PDF viewers

On turning texts into font rendering errors



I would like to have a PDF viewer that supports easy sharing the same annotations across linux and macOS and android.

Q: Is that feasible?

A: Only if we expand the definitions of easy, annotation and feasible.

Evince

Linux.

The KDE (okular) and GNOME (Evince default PDF readers are more-or-less indistinguishable from the perspective of a user like me. Both are passable but have clunky annotation exchange. Evince has a terrible UI for even viewing annotations — It summarises the text of each annotation in the navigation sidebar as my name and the date. I already know my name. It’s the content of the PDF I am concerned with here. Navigating that monolithic text blob by choosing which bits of it are useful to me is the whole reason I am using a computer here, not wondering what is truly me and what is someone else. I’m not saying there is no conceivable use case for such a UI, just not a one that I have had thus far in my decades on this earth.

dan dan dan dan dan dan dan dan

Also, it cannot save over the PDF you are currently editing; you have to make a new copy then manually rename it over the previous version. This is because, I suppose, mint condition PDFs have a higher resale value? A concession to the NFT market?

Plus side: supports adequate latex synctex preview.

/usr/bin/pip3 install --user https://github.com/efoerster/evince-synctex/archive/master.zip

## Qpdfview

Linux.

An alternative at the opposite end of the minimalism spectrum is [qpdfview](https://launchpad.net/qpdfview) which, as the name suggests, clearly had a excessively fractious committee behind the design decisions.
It has dozens of settings with confounding [nerdview](./nerdview.html)  names.
Nonetheless, it can save and load PDFs, which is nice and not at all a given for the apps in this list.
AFAICT it still doesn’t navigate PDFs by annotations, or support highlighting annotations of text in the commonly-understood meaning of that term.

## Zathura

[Zathura](https://pwmt.org/projects/zathura/) seems to be the document viewer recommendation *du jour* in certain
linuxy circles.
It does auto syncing and updating and such.
It has no annotation support AFAICS but goes fast.
If you like typing `/` instead of `Ctrl-F` and think that you will save time by manually defining specific keyboard shortcuts in a config file, you will feel right at home.

## Skim.app

Mac. TBD.
[Skim | Home](https://skim-app.sourceforge.io/)

## Acrobat

I’ve always disliked the gigantic
[Adobe Acrobloat Reader](https://get.adobe.com/reader/).
It has become singularly useless to me now since there no longer seems to be a linux version.
Maybe one could [run it](https://github.com/chrisdaish/docker-acroread) in [docker](./containerized_apps.html) if one needed to fill out a form?

## Mupdf

[mupdf](https://mupdf.com/) might be an option although the linux versions look outdated.

```bash
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntuhandbook1/apps
sudo apt install mupdf mupdf-tools

Misc

There is cross platform support from the commercial app foxit.


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